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30               A SEARCH IN SECRET EGYPT
"Homage to thee, thou art the lord of heaven," sings the beautiful old Hymn To Ra When He Riseth In The Eastern Sky, "Thou stridest across the sky with heart expanded with joy. Thy rays are upon all faces. Hail my lord, thou that passest through eternity and whose being is everlasting."
If the Sphinx were connected with this religion of Light, it would surely have some relationship with the sun. It had!
For after I turned round to face the dawn4ight which now appeared out of the darkness, clearly streaked against the flat horizon, I remembered the golden disk of my vision and saw this relationship as in a flash. To test the matter I bent down and scrutinized something on my left arm, a radium-lit wrist compass, safe guide and good friend.
And I found that the Sphinx had been set with its face exactly towards the east, its sightless eyes gazing exactly at the spot where the sun was beginning its diurnal reappearance upon the horizon!
The Sphinx was set eastwards to symbolize Life reborn, as the royal tombs of Egypt were set on the west bank of the Nile to symbolize Life passed, through analogy with the setting sun. And just as the risen sun ascends into mid-heaven, so man, after his resurrection, ascends into the spiritual world, and, as the sun traverses the royal arch of the heavens, and then proceeds on its unobserved course below the horizon, so man traverses both worlds.
I turned back and resumed my watch. As the night slipped away, the face of the Sphinx became more and more distinct, while the massive girdling wall which surrounded it stood up clearer and clearer against the sands.
A pinkish light appeared in the sky, running in long lines as though marked with a crayon by an unseen hand. Upward rose the dawning sun, more and more disclosing to one's view the familiar Egyptian landscape and tinting the distant heights to a pale rose.
Seven miles away the muezzins of Cairo would be mounting the tall minarets of their mosques, to stand on circular platforms and call the Prophet's followers from their sleep, for it was now the hour of first prayer.
Here the Sphinx called too, albeit silently.
And as I gazed at its half-profile I wondered at the temerity